2021 Boston Israeli Film Festival – Guests
Gad Aisen, Director, Rockfour: The Time Machine
Gad Aisen, Tel Aviv University graduate in film and television. director and film producer specializing in documentary. Rockfour: The Time Machine, is his seventh full length feature. Earlier works include Open Heart (2016) and A Song of Ascension“(2017) in collaboration with director David Ofek, which was a critical success outside and within the film industry.
Shai Avivi, Actor, Here We Are
Shai Avivi is an actor, comedian, and Israeli television host. He has won three Ophir (Israeli Academy) Awards for Best Actor. Avivi graduated from the Steve Tisch school of Film & Television, Tel Aviv. He became well known in the 90s for the Israeli satirical sketch comedy television program Hahamishia Kakamerit/The Kameri Quintet. He has also starred in TV series including HaBurganim, Pillars of Smoke, and Losing Alice. His film work includes One Week and a Day (BJFF 2016) and Longing (BJF 2018).
Noa Evenor, Moderator, Sky Raiders
Noa Evenor always had passion for dance, music and theater. She participated in several musicals including Aladdin, as Jafar, Beauty and the Beast as the beast, High School Musical 2 as sharpay, and Shrek as Lord Farquad. She also plays guitar and participates in dance competitions.
Lisa Fishbayn Joffe, Moderator, Four Mothers
Lisa Fishbayn Joffe is the Shulamit Reinharz Director of the Hadassah-Brandeis Institute at Brandeis University, a research institute on Jewish Women’s and Gender Studies. Dr. Joffe researches and teaches feminist and legal theory with a focus on Jewish feminism in America and Israel and on gender issues at the intersection between secular and religious law. Dr. Joffe is also a co-founder of the Boston Agunah Taskforce, devoted to research, education and advocacy for women under Jewish family law.
Liora Kushner, Host, A Sweet Slice of Israel: Cake Making Class
Liora Kushner is the owner of Liora’s Catering, a Boston-area boutique catering company, specializing in events based on Mediterranean-style cuisine. Liora moved to Boston from Israel in 2002, where she was a practicing civil attorney. After several years in the legal field in Massachusetts, she followed her dream of opening a business, with a focus on food inspired by her Moroccan family roots. She has been featured several times in the Boston Globe and other local Jewish press outlets. She lives in Brookline with her husband and three children. Learn more at her website or on Facebook.
Eli Lulai, Protagonist, Rockfour: The Time Machine
Eli Lulai is the founder and lead singer of Rockfour, as well as a multi-disciplinary artist with over 25 years of experience in music and art.
In addition to his work with Rockfour, Eli has released a number of solo albums and has worked on soundtracks for TV and film. He also works as a mentor, teaching musicians about the creative songwriting process.
Outside of music, Eli is an accomplished painter and sculptor, having exhibited his works at the Orly Dvir Gallery. He is also a voice actor, dubbing characters for a number of popular animated shows.
Rachel Madpis Ben Dor, Protagonist, Four Mothers
Dr. Rachel Ben Dor is a Biblical and Talmudic scholar with a PhD from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. Her current research is about women peace advocates in Israel and their use of biblical texts in communicating their movements’ messages. Rachel founded and led the Four Mothers’ grassroots women’s peace movement which lobbied the Israeli government to stop the war with Lebanon in 2000. Rachel has documented the story of the movement in a book (to be published in Israel March 2021) and on the web. To learn more about the book, visit www.rachelbendor.com. The book is based in part on documents and videos collected in a digital archive, available at http://library.osu.edu/projects/fourmothers.
Yael Marx, Moderator, Rain in Her Eyes
Yael Marx has been a teacher and an educator in Israel and the United States for more than 30 years. She holds a Master’s degree in literature from the Hebrew University in Jerusalem and a Bachelor’s degree in literature and cinema from Tel Aviv University. For the past six years, Yael has hosted twice-weekly book clubs that create an opportunity to read the texts of Israeli literature as well as world fiction translated into Hebrew. These sessions make the texts accessible as human stories alongside a deep academic discussion.
Ron Omer, Director, Rain in Her Eyes
Ron Omer is a longtime film editor, whose work includes feature films, documentaries, and fiction. He has won 3 awards from the Israeli Film Academy. Rain in Her Eyes is his directorial debut.
Shy Nobleman, Moderator, Rockfour: The Time Machine
Shy Nobleman has been one of Israel’s pioneering indie rock artists and media personas over the last 2 decades. After living in London in the mid 90’s, where he was part of the vibrant British Mod scene, he recorded his debut solo album, How to be Shy, in 2001. The sixties-like psych pop & power pop sounds of Nobleman’s songs, recorded with the members of Rockfour as his studio back up band, became a surprising hit in Israel and received great reviews abroad: “One of the ten best albums of the year” (Rolling Stone Magazine– Richie Unterberger). The album was followed by international tours and Beautiful Life, a follow up album which made the top ten in Israeli charts that year. Since then, Nobleman released a Hebrew album, My Year Is A Day/ Yomi Hu Chalom, in 2013. For more than a decade, Nobleman has been serving as a music journalist, tv host, and broadcaster for various Israeli Sports channels.
Nitza Shaul, Actor, Love in Suspenders
Nitza Shaul is an award-winning international artist in film and TV. Born in Tel Aviv, she studied at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts and the Drama Centre in London. Nitza made her West End debut in The Red Devil Battery Sign by Tennessee Williams, with whom she worked closely. Her film debut was in the Golden Globe-winning film The Policeman. Subsequent roles in Israeli film include Halfon Hill Doesn’t Answer and Little Man. She also played the leading role in the BBC drama Kessler and in Radio, and had guest appearances Dr. Who and Eastenders. Nitza is also a writer, creator and TV presenter.
Nitza is also a singer and musician who has published 11 books about classical music for children. She has performed with symphony orchestras throughout the world as a narrator-singer in contemporary music. She performed and recorded songs in Hevrew by Jobim and Dorival Caymmi, as well as Cuban and Mexican music. She has also created a series of live concerts for the family at the Israeli Opera in Tel Aviv that is now in its 20th season.
Amir Tadmor, Moderator, Here We Are
Amir Tadmor is the Director of Cultural Affairs for the Consulate General of Israel to New England.
Dr. Shayna Weiss, Speaker, Menachem Begin: Peace and War
Dr. Shayna Weiss is the Associate Director of the Schusterman Center for Israel Studies at Brandeis University. was the inaugural Distinguished Visiting Scholar in Israel Studies at the United States Naval Academy. She earned her PhD from New York University in Hebrew and Judaic Studies. She completed postdoctoral fellowships in Israel at Bar Ilan University and Tel Aviv University, where she taught courses about Israeli history and society. She has also taught at Brooklyn College and New York University. Her research interests converge at the intersection of religion and gender in the Israeli public sphere, as well as the politics of Israeli popular culture. She is completing a book on gender segregation in the Israeli public sphere.
Jorge (Johanan) Weller, Director, Love in Suspenders
Jorge Weller is an award-winning filmmaker born in Buenos Aires. He immigrated to Israel in 1978 and has directed and produced for Israeli TV and cinema. His projects include documentaries (Mi Telenovela Personal), and feature films (Salsa Tel Aviv, Like a Fish Out of Water), and TV series (Mossad).
Levi Zini, Director, Menachem Begin: Peace and War
Levi Zini is a leading documentary filmmaker in Israel with over 40 years of creating independent films and television documentaries in a variety of genres, including art films, docu-activism, and current affair exposés. In 2009-2013, Zini served as Chief Commissioner of Israel’s premiere documentary channel – Channel 8. Zini is a recipient of a variety of awards from local and international festivals. He was awarded Israel’s Minister of Education Award for Documentary Filmmaking in 1999 and 2012. Zini is a board member of the Israeli Documentary Forum, a lecturer and a judge for film funds and festivals and is the founder and Art Director of Doc.Films production house in Tel Aviv.